View Full Version : Don't want to reign on your parade, anyone applying for 2005

May 21st, 2004, 00:12
Hello there, first post on this forum but been readin it for a few days.

I am currently in my second year of uni and am applying for JET this september. I am very jealous of all you who are getting placements already if i could have applied last summer i would have, univeristy is great an all but constant examinations every year is beginning to get dull!

I was just wondering as alot of you seem to be current JET applicants i.e getting confirmations, are there any of you that are going to applying for next year (2005). If so, have you thought about anything that could make you stand out from the crowd as it were.

That goes for you who have been accpeted was there any advice you could give on things i should start or think about when applying. Say for instance a Japanese module or course (which i have already enrolled on for next year btw!!). Any help would be appreciative; been planning to do this for the last 2 years so would be gutted if i didn't get it. So the more gold stars i have under my belt the better!!!! :)

Thanks for your time!!

May 21st, 2004, 00:29
I did a Japanese module this year and the year before. I got the impression in the interview that this was a good thing. I think one of the key points they are looking for is an interest in Japan and learning more about it so anything that shows this is a bonus. Also, if you're doing a Japanese module get the teacher (who i presume will be japanese) to write one of your references - they really liked that as well.
hope that helps

one of my questions was 'who is next in line to the throne after the duke of york' (!! WTF who cares)

May 21st, 2004, 00:34
My advice is to be very knowledgeable about Japan, e.g. where the cities are, who the Prime Minister is, major Japanese companies, etc. This will help with the interview test. Know about your own country too, e.g. who is the Deputy Prime Minister and other useless facts. Be clear as to why you're applying for Japan and JET - why do you really want to go there? If you love Japan, think why and be specific and think of good concrete examples of relevant things you've done. Of course, anything cultural you could do would be a bonus, as would any kind of teaching experience.

Also, think about what you would bring to the Programme, e.g. is there any kind of extra-curricular activity you could do at your school? I mentioned running a drama club, but there are all kinds of possibilities - sports clubs, chess, anything!

Read a bit about teaching, especially how to manage a classroom, as you may get questions asked about that in the interview, e.g. how would you help shy students become involved in the class? What would you do if the Japanese teacher made an English mistake? And so on...

Hope that helps!

May 21st, 2004, 01:13
Wow thanks, good advice. Some stuff i hadn't even thought of; i have this summer to try and self teach myself japanese. Its weird though i have always had a desire to go to japan but have never really known why. i started doing karate when i was young so that might have something to do with it and my brother with his manga suply. I have done a bit of reading about japan but not much current affairs stuff. at least i have thought about it with plenty of time to spare..

Hopefully i can do some of things you said and will perform well in my module so my teacher likes me and will write a good report!!


May 21st, 2004, 03:46
Hi there!

Don't stress about the Japanese. What they want to see is a bit of interest and some effort. They dont want perfect Japanese people for this, so make sure you emphasise stuff thats makes you British.

Eg, I play Go (traditional Japanese board game) which I think they liked, but they immediately asked me if I played Chess. (I do, fortunately)

Get some teaching exp if you can, but dont overdo it. A degree in teaching isnt necessarily even a positive thing, as they think you'll hate working under another teacher.

Even if you dont have preferences about where to go, do some research, choose some nice places (not Tokyo!) and get some really interesting reasons to be there. So pick somewhere that has famous pottery or something, and say you love pottery so it would be cool to be there. But make sure they know that while you'd love to be placed there, anywhere else is fine too.

Write your essay well. I think this is the single most important thing to get right. You have all the time you need to prepare it, so think it through, structure it. Dont repeat, dont ramble. Dont use overly fancy language.

Basically, they want outgoing, positive, flexible people with an interest in Japan and a stable personality. Show these, and you should be in for a good chance.


PS. You've probably already found www.bigdaikon.com they have some good advice there, if you can filter through the rubbish. Try searching their archives, and asking questions nearer the time. Remember American interviews seem to be very different to UK ones, so take US advice with a pinch of salt.

June 11th, 2004, 12:05
High five, posters who have to wait a year or two to get started! :P

I've already quizzed Canuck about her interview, and it was about what I expected. I had another friend try for JET this year and not get in (so she's going on some other program), and can see why. I asked her once why she was interested in Japan, and she just couldn't answer. Is it the martial arts, the rich history, the food, what? All she knows aobut Japan is it's where anime comes from, and she wants to go there to be a DJ. *shakes head*

June 11th, 2004, 12:45
I credit my successful application to being flexible, having interest in Japan, and being easy-going and cheerful in my interview. I recommend that you read Importing Diversity. That book gave me a really good idea of what they were looking for.

June 11th, 2004, 17:38
Aaron, I thought you were hired for being the sexiest man on Earth! You've completely ruined my image of you, you know. :(

June 11th, 2004, 18:08
1. I wouldn't worry about the tests they give you too much - if you do well in the interview that will decide it.

- I completely flunked the tests (apart from the question about the meaning of the words like 'bungle'

For the interview

I just told em that I had been interested in Japan since I was a young child with both comic and film manga and that I played table tennis to a professional standard. I also stated that the reason I wanted to go was that the Japanese mculture interested me because it seemed so different from my own.

Advice for the interview - stay calm - they dont want some intellectual boffin who knows everything - they are just looking for someone who is easy going and friendly.
I managed to make them laugh a couple of times when commenting on my lack of experience of travelling and teaching and I think this paid off.

Also get yourself a killer line like " I believe the sharing of our cultures and knowledge is essential to the development of relationships between our nations" - they liked that one i think!

Also emphasise that you are very tolerant of others opinions and that you believe it is essential that we share our beliefs in order to get a better understanding of why we adopt these views

and other crap like that!


June 11th, 2004, 22:57
All the above is excellent advice, however, be aware that from what I've seen, who gets picked for JET is somewhat random.

I personally have known 8 people to apply for JET in the past 4 years, and only 4 of them have suceeded, despite ALL of them (in my opinion) having a healthy interest in Japan, having some teaching expereince, overseas living expreience etc.

It's hard to say exactly what the "judges" are looking for.... there were no obvious resons as to why I got picked, and my girl friend didn't.... if anything I would have thought that she'd be more suited to the programme than myself.

So, I'd definatley advise reading up on Japan, memorise some Japanese people, eg an author, the prime minister.. but also know the facts about your own country.... eg name three (in my case) British inventions... these are the things I was asked.

At the end of the day... I reckon its 50/50... so good luck.